Things are winding down a little as the holidays draw near, but there's always something happening for those looking for some festive FEAR. A few haunted houses are still open, macabre plays continue on the Chicago stage, and a few choice selections in film at some of the greatest independent venues in the country.
“Don't walk to the theater–RUN!”
Basement of the Dead presents: A Very Scary Axe-Mas - (Dec. 21st, 22nd) One candle to find your way through! Photo op with Kyle Vest as Jack Frost, the “Axe-Mas Santa,” and Santa's Sinister Little Helpers. 42 W. New York St., Aurora, IL 60506.
Christmas Nightmare at Massacre Haunted House (Indoors) - (Dec. 21st, 22nd) The waiting area, box office, and attractions are all indoors. Silent Night Maze, interactive snowball fight, and more. Almost 30,000 sq. ft. of space! 299 Montgomery Rd., Montgomery, IL 60538.
Festivus for the Rest of Us - (Dec. 23rd from 9pm-2am) Celebrate the Festivus way. Win gift cards to Bucket O' Blood Books & Records! DMen Tap, 2849 W. Belmont, Chicago, IL 60618.
Christkindlmarket - (through Dec. 24th) A wonderful, large collection of German and European merchandise offered by countless vendors. Grab some spiced wine, a stuffed pretzel, German food, seasoned nuts and candies, or find that unique gift for a special someone. Daley Center Plaza, 50 W. Washington, Chicago, IL.
Troll Hunt! - (through the summer of 2019) Search across 1700 acres of The Morton Arboretum for troll sculptures ranging from 15ft. to 30ft. tall! Tips: Check the site for info, maps, and locations so you do not get lost and please do not go without wearing some form of strong bug spray. Extra tips HERE. Morton Arboretum, 4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL 60532. Troll Cheat Sheet!
Space Golf - (Daily; Closed Dec. 24th & 25th) Alien-themed outer space fun with blacklight mini golf, 3D golfing, holograms, a Sci-Fi Cafe, and more. 15611 S. 94th Ave., Orland Park, IL 60462.
Bad Axe Throwing - (Days/times vary) Group rates apply or do a walk-in for $20 for one hour. Bad Axe Chicago, 2828 N. Clark (Atrium Level), Chicago, IL. (888) 435-0001.
CHRISTMAS HAUNTED HOUSES - Keep this list handy for all your holiday haunt plans this month.
Hitch*Cocktails - (Fridays at 10pm) Alfred Hitchcock-themed improv skits based on audience suggestions. Live jazz band, parlor games. Actors must drink as the plot thickens. The Annoyance Theatre & Bar, 851 W. Belmont, Chicago, IL 60657. Runs through January 25th, 2019.
THE WINTER WOLF - (Dec. 6th-Jan. 6th) A girl listens to her grandfather speak of the legend of the Winter Wolf. That night, it comes for her grandfather, but she manages to trap it. Otherworld Theatre, 3914 N. Clark, Chicago, IL 60613.
WITCH - (through Dec. 22nd) Inspired by The Witch of Edmonton by Rowley, Dekker, & Ford. Ages 14+ (violence and stage blood). Presented by Writers Theatre. The Gillain Theatre, 325 Tudor Court, Glencoe, IL 60022.
THE WOMAN IN BLACK - (Nov. 15th-Feb. 17th, 2019) The American premiere of the original London West End production (recreated with a Chicago-based cast) of an adaptation of Susan Hill's unsettling, timeless Gothic ghost story. Wednesdays through Saturdays at 7:30pm; Saturdays & Sundays at 2:30pm; Sundays at 7pm. Tickets are $49-$69. Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted, Chicago, IL.
YIPPEE KI-YAY MERRY CHRISTMAS: A Die Hard Christmas Musical - (Dec. 6th-Jan. 12th) Comedy with countless references from the film. The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee, Chicago, IL.
BORDER - (Dec. 21st-23rd; 26th, 27th) Dark, surreal fairy tale about a man and woman who find they share the same strange physical similarities. Considered one of the weirdest films of the year by many critics. Times vary. Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N. State St., Chicago, IL 60601.
BURNING - (Nov. 30th-Dec. 23rd) South Korean mystery drama starring Steven Yeun (The Walking Dead) based on Haruki Murakami's short story “Barn Burning.” Times vary. Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
MANDY - (Dec. 26th-Jan. 3rd) Back by popular demand! Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA [35mm] - (Dec. 26th & 29th; Jan. 1st, 2nd, & 3rd) The Dec. 29th screening at 2pm will be free for Music Box members! Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
BEDKNOBS AND BROOMSTICKS [35mm] - (Dec. 26th, 30th, 31st; Jan. 2nd & 3rd) Family film starring Angela Lansbury as an apprentice witch! Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
THE FOREST OF THE LOST SOULS / DONNIE DARKO - (Dec. 28th at 7pm) Windy City Horrorama event. BYOB. Bucket O' Blood Books & Records, 3182 N. Elston, Chicago, IL 60618.
EQUILIBRIUM [35mm] - (Dec. 28th & 29th) Midnight! In the future, a man (Christian Bale) is in charge of enforcing the oppressive laws against all forms of feeling and begins to question everything. Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
Rapture 2 - (Oct. 20th-Jan. 5th, 2019) Dark art exhibit. 17+. Aeon Gallery, 10331 Main St., Richmond, IL 60071.
The Science Behind Pixar - (through Jan. 6th, 2019) Learn about the science and technology behind the wonderful films Pixar creates. All ages. Museum of Science and Industry, 5700 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60637.
Svengoolie Coffin & More - One of the cooler things to do on a tight budget 6 days out of the week! The highlight for horror fans, of course, is the Svengoolie exhibit with his original coffin and the show's set, along with pieces from Shock Theatre. There are plenty of other cool things to see related to Chicago television and film, like a large display of items from Bozo's Circus, retro TV sets, journalism history, advertising artifacts, and so much more. The SNL exhibit is also stationed in the building. Museum of Broadcast Communications, 360 N. State, Chicago, IL 60654.
TOURS, ESCAPE ROOM:
Chicago Ghost Tours App - A free app for enjoying audio and photo tours of Chicago's Haunted Archer Avenue is available, courtesy of Edward Shanahan, a fellow ChicagoNOW blogger (check out his blog, Chicago Paranormal & Spiritual). He is also a psychic and paranormal host who has worked on making his app a great addition to fans of Haunted Archer. The app includes 16 locations and 6 cemeteries. Free download! Shanahan also has a free online magazine.
Mind Trap Escape Rooms - Solve the clues to get out within 60 minutes! 299 Montgomery Rd., Montgomery, IL 60538. (630) 216-9609.
Trapped in a Room with a Zombie - Room Escape adventures where guests must figure out clues and puzzles to escape a room they share with a snarling, chained-up zombie. Ages 14+ or must have parent. Fine Arts Building, 408 S. Michigan, Chicago, IL 60605.
Chicago Hauntings Bus Tours - One of the longest-running ghost tours in Chicago, each 2.5 hour tour is led by founder, paranormal investigator, and author Ursula Bielski and her partner, author David Cowan. Routine stops include locations of the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, Death Alley, gangland sites, murder sites, and more. Departs at the Congress Hotel. For schedules, all tours, and background information, please see ChicagoHauntings.com.
Times are subject to change.
EVIL DEAD THE MUSICAL - (Jan. 11th-Feb. 16th) Black Button Eyes Productions presents this hilarious musical tribute to Sam Raimi's glorious Evil Dead legacy. Splatter Zone seats are currently available! Pride Arts Center, Chicago.
B-Fest - (Jan. 18th, 2019) The annual 24-hour celebration of the best worst movies ever! Norris Center, Evanston.
Bloody Reads Event with Author Kealan Patrick Burke - (Jan. 9th) Meet acclaimed horror author Kealan Patrick Burke! Bucket O' Blood Books and Records, Chicago.
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